Ministry of Health in collaboration with Covid 19 multi-agency team in Mt Elgon Sub County has officially kicked off a mass vaccination exercise for the viral disease.
Speaking to a stakeholders’ forum meeting at Kapsokwony DEB Primary School, Mt Elgon Sub County Medical Superintendent Dr. Achiyenza Shikuunzi said the national government has rolled out a 10 days’ exercise targeting 2.3 million people in first 24 counties including Bungoma.
Dr. Shikuunzi noted that some 38,747 people were targeted for vaccination in Mt Elgon Sub County but only 13,876 have received first dose of the Covid-19 vaccination with 7,048 having received the second dose while 6828 other have not turned up for the second dose.
The sub county medical superintendent noted that the Ministry of Health has approved the following vaccine to be used Astrazeneca, Pfizer, Sinopharm, Moderna and Johnsons and Johnson.
He added that the campaign with a slogan of “KAA CHONJO” will target persons between 12 years and above with emphasis on high risk population such as frontline workers, the elderly who have not been vaccinated at all, those who did not get second dose while those fully vaccinated would be eligible for booster dose to enhance immunity.
According to sub county health nurse Miriam Wekesa, this campaign uniqueness is that they were not going to ask people to come to the nearest health facilities but the Ministry of Health would use the community health volunteers who would move door to door.
Mrs. Wekesa said that the sub county has enough doses with the community health volunteers who hit the ground immediately after the launch.
The sub county health nurse said that the exercise that commenced in the sub-county on July 22, 2022 will last for the next 10 days and is targeting to vaccinate some 9,776 with a target of 100 per day noting that they have 10 teams to cover the entire Sub County.
She said that each team has drawn a schedule on their movement plan to reach out to the community.
Mt Elgon Sub county Assistant County Commissioner Joseph Kipyator has given instructions to all chiefs and assistant chiefs along with nyumba kumi and village elders to immediately embark on mass vaccination awareness exercises.
Kipyator said that the community has forgotten that there was a pandemic and many people lost their lives during the period of lock down.
He asked the chief and assistant chief who were present in the meeting to continue reminding the community to adhere to the Ministry of Health protocols on prevention of Covid-19 such as washing hands, keeping distance and putting on mask.
The Assistant County Commissioner cautioned religious leaders who have been advising their congregation to ignore the vaccination that legal measures would be taken against them.
He added that the vaccine has been recommended by the World Health Organization through the Ministry of Health and is being administered worldwide.
The administrator called upon stakeholders to move with urgency to ensure that they achieve their target within the stipulated time.
The stakeholders present were health sector, media, religious leaders, community based organization, education sector, youth representative, council of elders among others.
By Douglas Mudambo